Blog

  • Deliberate Practice: The Path from Good to Great

    “Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe.” ― Abraham Lincoln You may be quite good at business communication – your presentations are competent, you can run a successful meeting, perhaps you have a talent for speaking extemporaneously to a group. But when was

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  • How To Eliminate Filler Words

    If you’re like most people, you find it annoying when you’re listening to someone and every third word is some version of a “filler word” — um, ah, y’know, right, ok. You can’t help but notice every single one, it’s very distracting, and instead of listening to the speaker’s message you find yourself waiting for the

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  • Eye Contact: Building the Emotional Connection

    Eye connection is the single most effective way to convey confidence and to have the greatest impact whether speaking one on one or to hundreds of listeners. In the Western culture we use our eyes as a powerful vehicle of communication. Truly seeing someone is to affirm their presence and allows you to pave the

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  • The #1 Employee Skill Gap

    Computer skills are considered essential in today’s business environment, as are skills at project management, planning, and problem-solving. But, according to LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner, the number 1 skills gap in business these days is communication. We tend to believe that technology has improved our communications, and in some ways, it has. However, it’s a

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  • Executive Presence: Your Wow Factor

    Executive presence is the hallmark of successful leaders who assert influence, drive change, and inspire organizational excellence. Their insight, judgment, and decision making are constantly being evaluated by stakeholders who look for integrity and wisdom in all their leaders say and do. Executive presence is the “x-factor” that defines how outstanding leaders think, act, and

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  • No Slides? No Problem

    If you present with any frequency, you know the day will come (if it hasn’t already) when you’ll be asked to present without slides, or the topic or situation doesn’t  lend itself to slides, or there is technical meltdown.  It’s OK, no need to panic, you can still give a memorable and effective presentation. The first

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  • Presenting to the C-Suite Part 2

    “If you don’t have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over?” John Wooden In Part 1 of this post, we looked at how to prepare for a presentation to the C-Suite, which involves more than just creating a presentation – it involves understanding your listener and their needs. You can

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  • Presenting to the C-Suite Part 1

    It’s high-stakes when you are presenting to the C-suite. Decisions made at that level resonate throughout the company, and can have a lasting effect on your own career. To work effectively with CXOs (an abbreviation for any C-suite executive), you’ll need to be very aware of your reasons for being there, be exceptionally well-prepared, give

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  • How to Run a Virtual Meeting

    Virtual meetings are all the rage these days, and for good reason. They put a group of people in far-flung locations into what seems like the same room. This is a major boost to communication, especially if you are using video, since it allows people to see each other. The umbrella term “body language” covers

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